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tv   Countdown With Keith Olbermann  MSNBC  October 25, 2010 11:00pm-12:00am EDT

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are coming from iraq and afghanistan homeless. those are my brothers. >> all right. i'm going to go home and watch the rerun of the show to figure out what you just said. we're going to get you back to find out how much rent you're paying. jimmy, thank you very much for your triumphant return to the last word. you can have the last word on f tweets at lawrence. that's tonight's last word. countdown is up next. which of these stories will you be talking about tomorrow? the plot to buy america. baper and kantor demonizing the t.a.r.p. bailout. the companies that got t.a.r.p. funds. boehner, $200,000 and canter $187,000. the single most important thing
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we want to achieve. it's for president obama to be a one-term president. the real republican platform revealed with gene robins. wikilea wikileaks, the cute forces were torturing and killing civilians and the bush administration knew it and lied. defense department contractors were killing iraqi civilians and the bush administration knew it and lied. the bombing of the shrine in february of 2006, the death of 1300 iraqi civilians. rumsfeld stuck to a number he believed to be the truth. >> it inflamed the situation and give heart to the terrorists and discourage those who hoped for success in iraq. >> bp's new ceo know who is is at fault for the aftermath of the deep water horizon disaster. the media. karl rove versus tokyo rose
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limbaugh. rove said the tea party is not sophisticated and limbaugh accuses him of elitism and huckabee said he thinks of them. >> we're don't want them dining with us in the main dining room. >> the mind-numbing implications with the man nicknamed terd blossom is elitist. >> it is what it is. this is minute, october 25th and in our third story, the secret money machine prepares a surge and it's outsized campaign spending. the godfather of the effort, karl rove defends secret donations now that it's clear that thi are not raising enough money through disclosed donations. those that benefitted from
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t.a.r.p. try to spear their opponents for having supported t.a.r.p. and the successful program. john boehner, the top recipient of money from those that received money, $200,000 to mr. boehner from the committees. the house republican said kantor was the number two and $187,000. then ranking republicans on the finance and tax writing committees. while t.a.r.p. companies like citigroup gave money to democrats, republicans were trying to have it both ways. not just the gop leaders. in the senate race, brad ellsworth has been attacked in the political ad for supporting the obama, reed, pelosi agenda including the bank bailout. the republican nominee responsible for the ad received more than $30,000 from companies that took the disastrous t.a.r.p. money according to the
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"washington post." that is a snapshot of the disclosed side of this year's gravy train. the super secret money is far broader with the largest outside conservative groups with a coordinated final week attack according to the "new york times." we carpet bombed for two months in 82 races. now it's sniper time said rob collins from the action network using imagery fitting to his side of the cause. that shares office space on the other side of the white house at american across roads go, ps. super packs are prohibited from coordinating with candidates and parties, but they certainly coordinate with each other. weekly strategy sessions include about 25 representatives from pro republican groups and at times included one of the master spread sheets that helps them decide where to send their money. the congresswoman once held a
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4-1 fund-raising advantage over the republican challenge sandy adams. adams did not run her first ad until today. she hardly needed to. attack ads from the outside groups have more than made up the difference, including $770,000 from spending from the 60 plus foundation and a quarter million more from the chamber of commerce. and the degree to which money from these outside groups favored republicans becomes more clear with each day. pro republican groups that do not disclose have clobbered their counterparts $121 million to $50 million according to the center for responsive politics. the pro gop groups win out as well. you might just recall that karl rove was against non-disclosed money in 2004. bob schaffer of cbs wondered why he was now for it.
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>> i'm against it. all the 527 ads and activities. i don't think they are fair and it's appropriate. they are misusing the law and they all ought to stop. >> so why is it if they were that bad back then, they are so wholesome now? >> i'm not suggesting, it is what it is. the choice is whether you fight with one arm tied behind your back or not. i wish we had a different system, but we got the system we got. >> the american cross roads claimed to be for disclosure in may in a panel discussion. american across roads board member said i'm a proponent of lots of money and full disclosure. less than a month after the discussion struggling to raise enough money, the across roads gps was born. three groups that don't disclosed aired nearly 47,000 ads according to media matters. the u.s. chamber of commerce and
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gps, the top two. let's turn to the "washington post" writer, msnbc contributor, ezra kline. good evening. >> good evening. >> this amount of secret money, wey tried to put it in perspective for weeks now. at this point, days out, how would you characterize it? >> it's an extraordinary amount of secret money. i 78 struck by karl rove. summer he was part of a presidential administration that happened to control the house and the senate for a period and they did nothing serious on campaign finance reform. they are playing the game and a couple of years it will be the democrats. the system keeps getting more broken. this is what i can't figure out. why do they, the politicians want to keep playing this game? it favors them one year and goes against them one year. the people in this country think they are discredit and corrupt. why don't they change it? what is in this for them in the long run? >> does the answer to that lie in incumbency is incumbency and
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staying in office becomes for the lesser minded of the politicians of both parties? >> i believe that's right. the only convincing answer i have heard is as much as you hate an incumbent dialling for dollars and calling the fund-raisers and sitting down, at least you know you have got that network and your challenger probably doesn't. these 527s, when you say the numbers, one thing people need to put in perspective are the companies, a lot of the money could go through dizzy closure and individual candidates and they don't want to do it. it's a strategy. they made a decision. this is going to come and invite all of them to the next round. the money goes back and forth and everybody is benefiting from massive anonymous donations and will be on the wrong side the next time. it will always come back to haunt them. >> the idea that the groups cannot interact with actual campaigns, there is no doubt what a strategic force the groups are collectively despite
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they can't coordinate with candidates. >> at this point we have such sophisticated tools and incredible information. these things are much more like campaigns and small groups. the idea that these are not according to campaigns are true, but it's a wall that is meaningless. there nothing about these and these are probably much, much more sophisticated than the campaigns themselves. >> the big draw for the secret giving. it would be the secrecy as opposed to al truism or political concern. the end result in most cases at least this time around have been attack ads against democrats. does anything compare to the dynamic we are experiencing right now? >> it feels like in every election cycle we look at what we saw before, but worse. we have citizens unite and nondisclosure is easier. we did the 527s before. one thing i point out about is thes united. no one would have said four or years ago that our system was
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working. it is broken then and more broken now and more broken by the year. it's different in the way it's always different. it keeps getting worse and it will get worse until they get pressured to change it or decide they are tired of the people looking at them and tired of going through this year after year to change it on their own. >> in the democratic push back here, organizations like labor unions trying to counter the spending and the money pours in for the other side and unions are reaching the upper limits? >> very much. you need to shrink them. there is simply democrats that don't want to be a pro business party. there is nothing on the other side that has a sort of money when you see the hedge fund at the edge and sitting with the chamber of commerce. that's where the money is. it's not on the union side. >> ezra kline, thanks as always. let's bring in ezra's colleague, a senior fellow and was included in bill o'reilly's opening segment this evening. a big picture of you.
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congratulations. you did something nasty apparently. >> i feel good about that. >> watch it later on. have somebody you don't like watch it and tell you about it. it's similar when i asked ezra about this. in its full political context, what are we seeing? >> what we are seeing here is the spending of secret political money on scale that we haven't seen since watergate. what we are seeing are attack ads from which no one is being held accountable and that's a particular problem when many of the ads are saying things that aren't true. what we are seeing are wealthy individuals give huge sums and have power in the game that they haven't had since the guilded age. eliza karny is very levelheaded. she doesn't sound a fire bell unless there is a fire and wrote big money and unprecedented
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secrecy are tailor made for scandal and that's what we will see when it's over. >> if we don't get scandal, we have distortions right now. as you point out, nobody is held accountable let alone for the ads, never mind the contents. here's an example. the american action network. there is an ad attacking the incumbent in connecticut, chris murphy. health care bill means jail time for anyone without coverage. we know what word it is. it begins with bull and ends with it. this is the thing democrats are fighting. this is one ad out of nearly 600. >> the problem is, if your opponent goes up with an ad that makes a false accusation, he has to pay it forward or she has to pay for it with money under the cap. it's not secret money. secondly, you can go right back at the opponent and say your opponent lied. here you have your opponents out.
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they are not -- there is no one in particular that are the shadowy interests. what do you do with that? they have a kind of impunity to say what they want in a way that no candidate on either side has. that's a problem. >> the fortunate thing is the polling suggested that the public cares and seriously cares about this when attention is focused on it. it is not as republicans have been saying a process story or sour grapes on the part of the democrats. is the collective national revelation under way too late to prevent this from working exactly as the gop wants it to work a week from tomorrow? >> i think democrats got pushed off this a little bit. the republicans hit them and sometimes democrat when is they get hit pull back a little bit. that's a problem. there have been some press stories that treat it more like a political story than i think like the nonpartisan political problem it is. most parties should care about
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this. most ads begin to have a negative effect. there were more negative ads in some markets than beer and viagra ads during football. when people see these strange groups, they begin to ask themselves questions. i think there is a dawning that there is something really, really wrong here. >> to that point, you wrote that the media treated this as if it were a normal political story. do you have an idea of why that is? that's apparent that they look at this like it's any other election and it's not a democrat versus republican side. it's a responsive politics versus anonymous politics side. >> my view is that what do journalists care about? revealing secrets and try to tell the public, these folks are hiding something from you. this is tailor made for the wood ward of the new bernstein. there some journalists who have been serious about this.
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eliza is one of them. jill abram son and they are both made the watergate analogy and this is something all of us have to worry about. the former reagan administration official, president of the committee for economic development. that's a business group. he said that candidates are not commodities. they are not supposed to be bought and sold. there republicans out there who are starting to look at this and saying this is wrong. i hope that has an effect. >> as always, good to talk to you. thank you. >> thank you. >> this programming advisory, the madness of the tea party. names and crazy plans and enough hate to launch a thousand cam paps. a commercial comment wednesday night here on countdown. mitch mcconnell may have given away the true plans. its primary goal he says to make this president a one-termer.
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>> the single thing we want is to make president obama a one-term president. the mortal lies of iraq. what wiki leak lied about and the revelations that the surge was an illusion. the new chairman making things worse. the fear and depression after his company poisoned the gulf media fault. thrown under so many buses by now, he must see the crassies in his dreams. he is too elitist for the tea party. the saga on countdown. quite. ♪
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bloomberg news what the republicans would do in power should they return this election cycle. mitch connell said he didn't want to scoop himself. a week and a day before the americans vote, leader mc connell laid out his party's blueprint, the plan for 2011 and 2012 is to make sure president obama does not win a second term starting in 2013. that's it. the president and connell were interviewed for the national junior. president obama said he is hopeful for bipart anship efforts on things like education and infrastructure, but not banking on it, saying it's going to be important for democrats to have huh ility in the absence of what we can accomplish. connell ensured there would be no cooperation. he was writing he was intent on not repeating the mistakes of the gingrich and dole congress of 1994. republican overpromising and the
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government shut down led to bill clinton's second term. the kentucky senator's plan, "we need to be honest with the public. this election is about them, not us. we need to treat this election as the first step in retaking the government and we need to say to everyone those who made this a good day, help us finish the job. they are extending the bush tax cuts. for the next two years, the single most important thing we want to achieve is for president obama to be a one-term president. the single most important thing we want to achieve is for president obama to be a one-term president. mcconnell's office defeated them saying our single biggest political goal is to give our nominee for president the maximum opportunity to be successful. for the bottom line, the leader
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admitted that the bar for support is set at will it hurt president obama? might it help the republican presidential nominee in 2012? snooki. let's bring in gene robinson, pulitzer prize winning editor and msnbc analyst and author of disintegration. the splitting of black america. you can't hear this too often. the single most important thing is for president obama to be a-term president. what's the primary goal? is the only brb with this honest is it's the goal since november of 2008 and went to a sitting president when that is an either or when helping the country? >> i don't know if that's the only problem. after all we have massive unemployment and we are in two wars. we need to fix our education system and infrastructure and figure out what kind of economy we need to look for and social
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security and entitlement. there a few things on the plate. it is a problem that this is the stated goal of the republican caucus and perhaps the republican majority in the u.s. senate. but the honesty is refreshing and as much as they try to walk it back, the record of the past 21 months speaks for itself. >> the two-step plan which is promise nothing and then do nothing for two year and it is other half is handed off to a presidential nominee and good luck because the country is in ruins by that. the nearly 10% of americans not working are going to vote for that kind of short-term two-year plan of a silent blip line across the screen? >> i doubt it and smart republicans doubt it. look at the past several
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elections. we had elections in 2006, the republicans were basically swept out of congress and in 2008 the rest of them were swept out. now in 2010 it looks like they may be swept back in. that is no guarantee that the wave is not going to slosh the other way in a hurry. i think perhaps the worst thing the republicans could do would be look like a bunch of small-minded short-term politicians who only want to win an election and don't care about the problems people say they want solved. >> yeah, but that is suggesting they should change for that which is i don't want the president to fail. i want him to change. what is he expecting him to change into? ronald reagan? >> that's again the republican stance. we are willing to cooperate with president obama as long as he does everything we tell him.
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everything our way and he doesn't even though he is a democrat, he doesn't do anything that is like in the democratic party platform, for example. there is more than a contradiction there. it's a recipe for kind of gridlock that i really don't think the american public is going to take well to. frankly the president ought to be able to exploit politically if it comes to that to his advantage. >> buried in all this, the hesitance to repeat the government shut down and a couple of weeks ago now that the republican tea party senate candidate in alaska claimed mitch mc connell and other republicans were keeping the idea of the government shut down on the table. have they they found they do not need to do a shut down to stop government from funking or not going to tell anybody this until after the election? >> they have come close to
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shutting down, certainly a lot of presidential initiatives without an actual shut down. this will be interesting because let's suppose that there a lot of joe miller-type tea partiers who come to washington and who don't necessarily think that the government shut down is a bad idea given that the republican caucus is so full of arch conservatives already. the leadership may have trouble controlling that sort of impulse which i think would politically be the white house's wet dream of what might happen, but they are going to try not to do that based on what happened the last time. >> fascinating if there is a fizzure between the republicans and the tea partiers. msnbc political analyst, great as always. >> good to talk to you. >> in the wikileaks do you
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means, the bush administration knew the success of the surge was a coincidence of timing and they lied about that. ahead. an accident doesn't have to slow you down. from new car replacement and guaranteed repairs to accident forgiveness, we do all we can to help you move on. liberty mutual auto insurance. responsibility. what's your policy?
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the truth of the wikileaks about iraq. first the saturday. the actor producer witnessed the 1928 world series to alfred hitchcock and formerly the tennis opponent of charlie
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chaplain. he is 95 and 11/12 and bouncing back from an accident. bad enough. we wish him well as we wish to recover. let's play odd ball. >> are today not so much. smoke took a few hours to clear. will take a few days to clear the rubble. the building had been abandoned since the 1980s and they blowed it up good. real good to make room for a new park t. came itself a swallow many as haiti was releasing. cleveland and georgia. what the heck is this? it's a bison in a swimming pool. it looks like a furry fish. apparently this animal escaped and was on the lamb. i don't see a lamb. he was hot and he went for a
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dip. he had a large possibly angry animal in your pool? throw a lasso around his neck and pull. everybody ran away fast. in case you are wondering, they are available to lifeguard your next party. finally to the russian internets where jackass 3d was not three-dimensional enough. they need to try the stunt themselves to see how well fireworks work in a bathtub. they work well. i'm not sure what they expected to have happen, but there is still only the second most embarrassing picture known of a shirtless russian. time marches on. wikileaks getting new information about donald rumsfeld as it is unknown why this contry tolerated a deliberate liar as secretary of defense for years. next. she felt lost...
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>> are thousands of american lives lost, tens of thousands of iraqi lives lost. trillions down the drain.
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we were led to war in iraq based on lies and as the largest classified military leak proved the falsehoods did not end there. the third story, the bush administration knew how bad the situation was in iraq and repeatedly lied about it. the website wikileaks releasing 400,000 do you means, detailing the war and occupation of iraq as reported by american soldiers, putting the amount of civilians killed at 66,000. even though many deaths went unreported by the military. such as in the aftermath of the shrine in february of 2006. "the washington post" reported 1300 dead based on accounts on the ground while the pentagon put the estimate at 350 people. as the documents from wikileaks showed the pentagon knew the number was much higher and so secretary of defense rumsfeld chose a different tack. lie and blame the media. >> interestingly all of the k j exaggerations seem to be on one
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side. it's not a series of random errors on both sides of issues. on the contrary, the steady stream of errors all seem to be the nature to inflame the situation and to give heart to the terrorists and to discourage those who hope for success in iraq. she was claiming their no lying on the american media. the country was not a wash. >> we look at this closely and i do not believe one, that we are in a civil war right now. two, nor do i believe that a civil war is imminent or necessarily inevitable. >> that brings us to the highly regarded surge. the bush ood min station crediting the strategy ending the war and they still do. the documents show otherwise. while troop diagnosis provide increased security, sectarian violence was dropping before the surge was in place. the do you means also show that
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the pentagon knew fores were killing and forturing detainees. the "new york times" summarizing that part. the years of reports included references to the dotings of at least six prisoners, most in recent years. beatings, burnings and lashings in hundreds of reports, giving the impression such was not an exception. it was merely noted thanks to a detainee with coalition forces would be investigated. security contractors working on behalf of the united states were killing civilians and the contractors adding to the chaos and shooting first and asking questions later and even though, the government continues to back them. like in afghanistan, there more contractors there than there members of the american military. joining me now from kabul, the national security reporter of the nation and the wise of the world's most powerful.
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jeremy, let me start with president karzai. he wants the contractors gone. the u.s. continues to support them. why are these lessons so freshly underscored from the wiki leaks from iraq not going to be applied in afghanistan? >> greetings from kabul where the u.s. ambassador at this moment is being guarded by blackwater, the firm that became infamous for killing civilians in iraq. if there is a lesson to be learned, it's for the obama administration. why continue to use a firm with such a criminal track record of shooting civilians? why use them now when the u.s. is trying to win hearts and minds? what the wikileaks documents show is that the state department new that they were killing civilians while guarding personnel and actually didn't do anything to discipline them or punish them because according to an internal document, the state department believed that it would hurt morale of blackwater.
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what about the iraqi people being targeted by the people? hamid karzai is under the impression that he is in charge. the u.s. is calling the shots and blackwater stays. >> that's backwards on some of this. based on the reporting at the time, many of us believed that the bush administration was lying on the situation on the ground in iraq daily. repeatedly in man fold ways. is there criminality involved in what we know about this and what's confirmed about this so far sf. >> first of all, the entire operation was a criminal enterprise because it was a war based on lies. there were scores of war crimes that were unprosecuted and goes further than lying or misleading. donald rumsfeld when he was secretary of defense in 2005 implemented a policy known as the salvador option that the u.s. fuelled in the 1980s. what rumsfeld and his cohorts were doing was supporting what were effectively death squads
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known by wolf brigade and scorpion brigade. they targeted the sunnis and talked about the surge being a success. rumsfeld and his cronies reported activity that essentially balcanized baghdad. when the troops came in, they didn't go to the heart of the violence. they went to baghdad. it's a lie, but the criminality, but the u.s. was supporting and creating death squads, keith. >> to prego 242 and the iraqi death squads, even though this bizarre thing allowed torturing and murdering of iraqis by iraqis and those would be note and not invest gated because they did not involve coalition troops directly, did anyone are have a legal duty to stop those that were noted abusing detainees? >> of course they had a
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responsibility, especially in f they were aware or witnessed it. the bush administration was to out source the policy and what's important to remember here as we talk about iraqi forces abusing detainees is u.s. forces were systematically abusing and detaining detainees at the prison and the facility that was the joint special command facility which was a classified facility where prisoners were being tortured. the whole operation was one of shielding this torture that was going on by the iraqi forces or at the same time u.s. forces were torturing themselves. the obama administration intervened to stop lawsuits against donald rumsfeld and the command authority who actually gave the orders to torture the detainees. >> last point. give me your headline out of everything in the latest wikileaks thing. the destruction of the myth or the success of the surge or something else? >> i think that's a big part of
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it. the fact that they were lying and supporting death squads and they were turning a blind eye to torture and torturing at the same time. the headline here is that those people who were against this war from the beginning, you said it was a war based on lies and civilians were paying the heaviest price, they were vindicate and they had war crimes and needed to be held accountable. that's where congress needs to put the pressure on the administration. >> the national security reporter for the nation, thanks for getting up predawn in kabul. >> my pleasure, keith. >> what are does it mean when conservatives paint karl rove as elitist? when terd blossoms are too fancy pants for the tea party. mead the new boss. the panic and depression after the oil disaster. he blamed it on the media. this will be an hour show. when rachel joins you, her report on the assassination of dr. george tiller.
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he calls the tea partiers unsophisticated as a compliment he now claims and before you know it, an episode of he haw has broken out. ahead on countdown. campbell's condensed soup. pass it on. campbell's.® it's amazing what soup can do.™ but my doctor told me that most calcium supplements... aren't absorbed properly unless taken with food. he recommended citracal. it's different -- it's calcium citrate, so it can be absorbed with or without food. citracal.
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get out your pitch forks and torches. time for the worst persons in the world. christine flynn, an inmate in wisconsin tried to forge court documents to steal money from another prisoner. that's bad enough. she maded guilty and it will cost her up to 22 more years. worse, on the forged do you means she signed the judge's name and misspelled it. badly misspelled it. the judge was steven wenke. she spelled it winky. how could my plan miss? the runner up, governor butch otter in idaho appeared in jerome for a town hall much to the surprise of one librarian that noted a bus load of people showed and up and the library was not forewarned.
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they had a wedding reception. 20 guest appear and cut the cake only to find the governor answering the question about wolves. otter and his followers left to their cred credit, they stayed to clear the foaling chairs and the debris from the room. the winner, bob dudley, former u.s. head of pb who doesn't need to wait until the investigation report for the company's disaster at deep water horizon to know who is at fault. it was the media. addressinging a british lobbying group, there was a great rush to judgment before the faxes could possibly be known. even from some in the industry. the public fear was everywhere. after his poorly planned and poorly built and maintained peace of crap well exploded, killing 11 men and started to spew oil into the gulf, unproved for what was 87 days. a group of scientists estimated
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70,000 barrel essay day. he insisted the best estimate was 5,000 barrels a day. a government panel calculated it at 62,000 barrels a day. mr. dudley was full of crap and remains such. remember that chorus jon stewart how six-cylinder, high-octane liar, today's worst person in the world. ♪ would i lie to you oh, yeah nationwide insurance, i'm all ears.
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karl rove is now in hot water with the man of the people mike huckabee after already having gotten into hot water with the mouth of the people, rush limbaugh. we could keep moving through the body but i'll stop there. our number one story tonight.
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after calling the tea party not sophisticated it turns out that rove, himself, is a member of the nation's elite. mr. rove was asked about limbaugh's criticism yesterday and said the following. >> what he took out of context was a comment i made in an interview with a bunch of hostile german reporters in which i said the tea party is not sophisticated. >> of course, if we were unsophisticated in our journalism we might report it this way. yesterday rove repeated his slam of the tea party. >> the tea party's not sophisticated. >> but it was former and maybe future republican presidential candidate mike huckabee who really let rove have it yesterday naming rove as one of the washington elites. >> i was very disappointed in some of the, particularly karl and others, who were so dismissive of christine o'donnell and i've been on the receiving end of some of that when running for president. a lot of establishment types were very contemptuous toward me and treated me like some back water. and that's one of the things that happens when you didn't go to the right school and you're not a regular attender at the
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proper cocktail parties in the d.c. social circuit. but, unfortunately, there is an elitism within the republican establishment because a lot of people know that it's not so much about the principles of really controlling government and having responsible people in office. it's about making sure that the right people get into the game to play. it's almost, again, to be blunt, the kind of country club attitude that we're not sure there are certain people we really want as members of the club. we're not going to vote them in. we don't mind showing up to events putting up signs and making phone calls and going door to door making those pesky little trips that we don't like to do but we really don't want them dining with us in the main dining room. >> but is that really karl rove? here is the reality. carlton christian rove i arrived in the world in the most rarified atmosphere, literally.
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and into the fortune of the colorado roves. like so many of the finest men in his generation he kept his hands clean of filthy communist blood avoiding stepping one dainty toe in that nasty french quagmire known as vietnam by obtaining a deferment to pursue his love of academia. young mr. rove first cracked the books behind the ivy covered walls of the university of utah, the harvard of utah. and then the university of maryland, the princeton of maryland, as well as the university of texas at austin. the yale of the harvard of texas. without ever sullying himself with anything so base, karlton founded a white shoe direct mailing firm. soon after his involvement in watergate the most hoyty toity of political scandals karlton met a young man who made him swoon and he later enshrined their meeting in verse. huge amounts of charisma, cowboy boots, flight jacket. wonderful smile. just charisma.
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the homage to dickinson is manifest. rove's later endeavors in the most prestigious white house of the modern era have become legendary. who can forget the boyish tom foolery as revealing the identity of a cia op and playfully tricking white house spokesman scott mcclellan into denying it. oscar wilde, eat your decadent heart out. then it was bestowed upon mr. rove by the president of the united states himself, turd blossom, from the middle dutch, a piece of excrement. on that note before james mason's ghost comes after me, let's turn to michael shermer the publisher of "skeptic" magazine author of "why do people believe weird things" and columnist for "scientific america." good evening. >> good evening. >> we see this with republican attacks on almost every democrat but it seems that the worst thing a republican can say about
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you is, you're a reader and you appreciate, you know, like good food and insist on using reason instead of gut instinct. why do they hate those things? >> right. well, for the mind of the republican those things are proxies for something else, for their characterization of liberals as tree hugging, whale saving, wishy washy, namby pamby, flip-flopping bed wetters who think they can reason with the taliban and sit down with osama bin laden and read jon stewart mills on liberty and sing kumbaya and somehow come to a peaceful resolution. what republicans think is really we need to just do what jack nicholson said we should do in "a few good men." that is, we live in a world with walls and on those walls are men with guns and that's the kind of world that's simple, straight forward, black and white, and so all of this talk of books and college and reason and logic and critical thinking, they think, does not wash with people who
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just want to kill us. >> explain how and why the rights sort of signals for authenticity strike a cord among their voters. >> well, authenticity is then representing something sort of straight forward and honest like we believe in certain core values that shouldn't change, so if, for example, you change your mind in response to new evidence, which we should, i mean, what else should you do? but for the mind of the conservative, that could mean you're actually a flip flopper. you just change your mind any old time, and so we have to remember that we evolved in the small bands of hunter gatherers of a few dozen to a few hundred people over the last several hundred thousand years and where you know everybody. so we can pretty much judge people's character on our instincts based on our experience with them. and so that, in that sense the authenticity of our instincts does make sense but in the modern world it doesn't and so our brains are kind of tricked into thinking we should go for


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